Saturday, 3 March 2012

Broccoli and Eggs for Dinner, Lucian Freud for Breakfast

The other day set out to be a drainer and today was not much better in its over all dull pall of events...I've been thinning my soles looking for work in Nanaimo during these tough times (as if I describe a passing phase) and had finally landed an interview (exactly where shall remain untold for now). I was so out of practice, even though I tried to prepare well, I don't believe I was in top form or presented properly. Neither did I foresee being tested after the oral interview on my computer skills...I was feeling rusty and the easiest steps I knew so well on any other day would not even click. Wanting so much to win the job I became flustered during the test and was sure I had failed it (right after boldly expressing what a calm and steady worker I am under pressure, too!) Before even leaving the building I was convinced I had spoken too much and digressed under questioning, had not remained focused on the specifics of the job description, had forgotten entirely to mention certain crucial aspects of my resume that may have helped clinch it, talked too much about irrelevant experiences, and got stuck stumbling over my answers. To top it off I left in a rush, carrying a pen that belonged to the panel, and had to run back and return it.
On the ferry ride home what small bit of confidence I was clinging to had begun to wane, and by mid-evening, I was doubting myself entirely. I said to K, I'm sorry honey, I'm not going to get this job. He said, you know what, it's OK. What will be, will be, and I love you no matter what. 

Still, I slunked off (if that is not a word, let me call it one, it is very descriptive of the physical manifestation of my mood at that moment)...I slunked off and shut myself into my chilly studio and proceeded to get lost in my painting to avert the slow demise into self-loathing.
After some distant noise in the kitchen, K knocked on the door with this steaming plate of broccoli, tomato soup and egg souffle and locally baked bread.

K is the best cook ever, no matter what we have in the cupboards, he serves it up so beautifully every time. His daughter F also surprised me with a plate of her home made chocolate chip hummus concoction. Sustenance! Abundance! I made some headway with my painting, and went to bed full and feeling loved.

Today there was no call from the prospective job, and when I walked our dog Seeker to the mailbox in the rain, he sat chewing his stick watching me sympathetically as I shoved my hand deep to the back of the slot...nothing. Not the small refund we're expecting from pet insurance, not the very important mail K has been waiting weeks for, not even a rejection letter from any previous job applications...nada. Just the Harbour City Star newspaper.

When I came home, I decided to watch again a video my mum had sent me about Lucian Freud. His softly spoken opening words hit home with me at the core of my being. I want very much to find a fulfilling and enjoyable job with a dental plan and kind coworkers and a viable salary. And I need to keep looking rather than sit waiting on a call that may not come. At the same time, I only have control over one thing....I can keep painting, no need to answer to anyone but myself about the value of my endeavour or the quality of my work. I can choose how to spend my days. And sometimes I will even ignore the dishes and paint on through the piling mess. After all, it doesn't seem Lucian dusted much.

I have a gorgeous book on Lucian Freud, have held a fascination with him, and used to fantasize (while he was alive) about being painted by him (how I would have made it to London was not part of the fantasy...maybe on a unicorn). David Hockney speaks about what it was like to be painted by Freud in this amusing and insightful video, also recommended by my mum, which made me giggle.

Even though the last couple of days have been pervaded by a sense of socked-in stagnancy, the little boosts from family ~ my love's cooking, F's chocolate hummus spread, and my mum's perfectly timed video share have been sparks of light. I wish I could capture that quality of light on canvas....perhaps there is a way.

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